Monday, 3 January 2011

2011 - Scribble City Central's Predictions

Happy New Year, Lovely Blog Readers.  It's 2011, and I've been peering into my scrying glass and my crystal ball to bring you
Scribble City Central's Predictions for the Writing Year
Some of them may be mildly eccentric--but then you wouldn't expect anything else, would you? Here goes...

Writing and Politics:
Not a very hard prediction, this.  There will be increasing anger about library cuts, and there will be much writing by writers to MPs, councils, newspapers and on blogs. On Feb 5th we will be sitting-in in various libraries around the country, and I forecast that many of us will march through the streets.  PLR will be cut again in the next budget, and reading and literacy programmes will be quietly axed with politicians hoping we won't notice.  We will though, won't we?

Writing and Social Media:
I've said it before and I'll say it again.  I predict that social media will become increasingly important to the writing community as a whole, and writers who don't engage with it will be left behind. Publishers' publicity departments will have their publicity budgets slashed as never before, so it will be up to authors to find ever more creative ways of getting their books out to the reading public.  I'm absolutely sure that authors on YouTube will be the Next Big Thing--look out for a rash of discussions on where to get a cheap but good video camera on author blogs!

Writing and Technology:
Keep up! This will be the year when e-books rock the public perception of reading even more than they have done already, and it's an easy prediction to say that publishers will be putting more money behind this than anything else--to the detriment of paper books.  The Kindle will be everywhere, and if the next generation iPad doesn't have a better version of e-ink than the Kindle now does, I'll be very surprised.  I also predict that the first proper versions of Smart Paper will be on the market before then end of the year. NB: On the Smart Paper front--Samsung have just unveiled a prototype touch sensitive screen at around 0.03mm thick at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas (Source: Daily Telegraph 07/01/11)'s definitely coming! 

Writing and Publisher Deals:
Of course, there will be a huge new 'debut novel of the year' for someone, and deals will still be being done at the London Book Fair, and at Bologna and Frankfurt.  But I am not predicting a great year for writers in general, even if they are already established.  All bets are going to be off as far as huge advances are concerned--especially for children's and YA books.  It'll be harder than ever to get published this year, and harder still to get an agent.  Sorry if this is depressing, but it's what seems to be floating around in the aether of prediction.  This is the one I'd REALLY like to be wrong about. 

I'm writing a series for younger readers and a YA novel.  Who knows what will happen?  Certainly not me, and I'm not going to make any predictions about my own 2011 future for fear of jinxes!  But what I can tell you is that I will be writing my socks off, being super-critical of and ruthless about my own work before it goes anywhere and keeping my fingers and toes crossed that I'll beat my own gloomy forecast (see above). This blog will shortly be getting a major redesign, so look out for that, as well as the forthcoming reviews for the 2011 British Books Challenge.  I'll carry on with my mad tweeting and hope to reach 1000 Twitter followers before the end of February.  I will also be one of those authors on YouTube--watch this space for news.  And my final prediction is that I'll be grateful, as always, for the support I receive throughout the year from all of you, and from my lovely bookish and authory friends around the world. I couldn't do it without you, so thanks in advance!

Have a wonderful start to 2011 and let me know what YOUR predictions are!


Nicky S (Absolute Vanilla) said...

I bow before you, oh wise woman - and concur with your predictions - but you need to include the Samsung Galaxy tab in your list of ereaders. It's really, really neat! An android, so all the capabilities of an iPad, but about the size of the Kindle - so fits neatly into the average handback (and has a phone and camera packed on board, though I suspect one might look a little silly using said features).
And psst, could you check your scrying thingywotsit and see if there's an agent on my near horizon. Thank you.

Carole Anne Carr said...

Have a great writing year!

Lucy Coats said...

Thanks, N. That's very kind of you. I have just looked in the scrying glass again and seen that the Android platform will indeed be big this year--and not only on e-readers but on phones too. How could I have missed it? And my crystal ball is sending encouraging sparks to you. It seems to want you to 'ask Shirley'. Does this mean anything to you?
CA--thank you. And you as well!

Jan Markley said...

Great predictions. I declared it the year of the writer on my blog - i.e., writers buckling down and writing. I agree with your social media predictions. Good news though, you don't need a video cam to create author book trailers. My niece creates mine using the programs on my iMac.

Becca said...

Brilliant predictions and I reckon you'll be proved pretty much spot on. Other than, obviously, the thing about advances as I will be getting a multi-million pound advance for my debut novel. *pausing to watch a cow jump over the blue moon*.

Looking forward to blog redesign and your YA novel. Have a good year!

Mr Uku said...

Great post except...

The iPad will have no version of e-ink, better or otherwise, as e-ink is an entirely different technology from that used in LCD screens. Kindle and iPad are very different from each other despite certain similarities.
I think you're right about e-publication though. However, I don't think it will be harder to get a publishing deal or an agent, because it's already very hard. The major difference will be in what happens when you get rejected. Previously you might have given up after numerous knockbacks. Now, instead of sticking your unwanted masterpiece in a drawer you can self-publish; it's easier than ever and mostly free. There'll be a lot more of this going on.
I'm sure there was something else I wanted to add, but I'm too hungry to think straight :-)

Lucy Coats said...

Jan--that would be great if I HAD an iMac. But I have a PC with no webcam built in, so will have to get a camera.:-( It's definitely going to be the Year of the Writer!

Becca--blue moons do exist, you know! Keep the faith...

Mr Uku--I think I could possibly have expressed myself a good deal better on the e-ink thing, and thank you for setting me straight. What I meant was that the new iPad will have to come up with an answer to e-ink which is compatible with the Apple LCD technology and addresses the 'reading in sunlight' issues.

Yes--getting an agent or a deal IS already very hard. I agree. But I STILL think it's going to get even harder. For me, the jury is out on self-publishing. I appreciate that companies like, forinstance, Lulu, are really excellent, but there are good reasons for having a publisher and an editor, if only to give you distance from your own work and another eye. But that's a whole other blog post, and I must go and do some of that writing stuff. I hope you found something good to eat...can't have my Lovely Blog Readers going hungry!

Nicky Schmidt (Absolute Vanilla) said...

have "asked Shirley" to lunch - do you think this will help. no reply as yet, however... *groan*

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